UN chief to convene Cyprus meeting in early March

Meeting will be informal without pre-conditions, says Antonio Guterres

News Service
09:21 - 29/01/2021 Friday
Update: 09:28 - 29/01/2021 Friday
UN General Secretary Antonio Guterres
UN General Secretary Antonio Guterres

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said Thursday he intends to convene a meeting with Cyprus parties in early March.

The meeting will be informal without pre-conditions to allow the parties to see that there is a change in administration in Northern Cyprus, Guterres said during his first news conference in 2021.

A new government was formed in the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) in December.

"It is important that there is a chance for people to frankly discuss among themselves," said the UN chief.

The parties are two communities on the island -- guarantor countries Turkey, Greece and UK.

"I am always ready to go to the Security Council if there is an agreement of parties in enlarging the scope of negotiations," said Guterres.

Cyprus has been divided since 1974, when a Greek Cypriot coup was followed by violence against the island's Turks and Turkey's intervention as a guarantor power.

It has seen an on-and-off peace process in recent years, including a failed 2017 initiative in Switzerland under the auspices of Turkey, Greece and the UK.

The TRNC was founded in 1983.

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